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Gay Soldiers’ Pic Causes Tiff in Israel

Hand in Hand: This photo of two Israeli soldiers holding hands has spurred debate over gay rights in Israel.

A photo posted on the Israel Defense Forces website in honor of Pride Month, showing two male soldiers in uniform holding hands, has caused a stir.

The photo posted Monday and captioned “It’s Pride Month. Did you know that the IDF treats all of its soldiers equally?” had garnered more than 7,800 likes and more than 5,800 shares as of Tuesday afternoon.

The more than 1,130 comments express both happiness and disgust at the photo, though positive comments appear to outnumber the negative by a large margin.

“Beautiful picture, proud to be an Israeli!!!!!!!!!” one comment reads. A combat soldier who identifies himself as gay comments that the photo “is absolutely reflective of how the Israeli army treats gays.”

Conversely, one comments reads, “This is disgusting,” and another says “too bad for them unless they repent.”

“Pinkwashing in action,” reads another comment, referring to accusations that Israel focuses on its openness to homosexuality to hide how it treats the Palestinians.

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